The Think Podcast with Joel Settecase - Presented by the Think Institute

37 - Why Only God Can Make Sense of the Laws of Logic (Blogcast)

An episode of The Think Podcast with Joel Settecase - Presented by the Think Institute

By Joel Settecase
Weekly encouragement and equipping to learn how to defend your faith and engage the world for Jesus. Every week Joel Settecase and a guest tackle an impossible question from a Christian perspective. Join us as we seek "Truth In Conversation." Presented by the Think Institute and Cru Church Movements.

Theme song: Whiskey on the Mississippi. Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com). Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0. creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0

More places to listen

39 - Why It's So Hard to Share Your Faith (and 3 simple steps to become more evangelistic)
Ready to go to the next level in your evangelism (and apologetics and biblical worldview? Sign up for the Think Update, a brief, weekly email with tools and tips to help you explain, share and defend your Christian faith, delivered straight to your inbox. Sign up right here. When you think about sharing your faith, what comes to your mind? Do you think about the look on the other person’s face? What is that expression? Is it happy? Angry? Maybe a little confused? Do you think about the scary proposition of offending someone? Or maybe you envision yourself getting off to a great start, and then dwindling into awkwardness as you run out of things to say, or answers to your friend’s objections? Maybe you’ve experienced a similar situation… or maybe the fear of it has kept you from sharing your faith. Today I want to share some thoughts that come directly from a course called Cojourners. This is a curriculum developed by the Church Movements team, which I’ve been trained in, and which I’ve adapted for the Think Institute. Actually I’m currently teaching a Cojourners class at Midwest Bible Church here in Chicago. Specifically, I want to talk about the subject of evangelism in some broad strokes… and I want to then zero in on one important concept: Why it's so hard to share your faith. Then I'll share with you three simple steps you can take to become more evangelistic. Get the full show notes at http://thethink.institute. 
25:32
October 11, 2019
38 - What is the Imago Dei? with the SONS OF THUNDER
The Sons of Thunder are back to grapple with the Bible's teaching that human beings are made in the image of God.  Joel and Parker bring a ton of biblical truth to bear in this episode, and if you have ever wondered what it means to be the image of God, you do NOT want to miss it.  Get a brief, weekly email to help you articulate, share and defend biblical truth delivered to your inbox. Sign up for the Think Update at http://thethink.institute/articles/update.
59:55
October 10, 2019
37 - Why Only God Can Make Sense of the Laws of Logic (Blogcast)
Belief in the laws of logic requires presupposing the existence of the God of the Bible. There are literally no other conceivable options, because no other worldview even suggests a god with the necessary attributes to ground abstract objects like logic (and morality and mathematics). We’ll examine this, and then show how this knowledge actually leads us to greater worship of God. Belief in God is a necessary precondition for logic. Laws of logic are unchanging mental abstractions which cannot float out in space or be proprietary of (changing) matter/energy, and which necessarily transcend all human minds (they would be true even if all ppl died). Belief in logic is belief in unchanging, universal and immaterial mental rules which must necessarily exist within a mind possessing the same attributes. One must believe in an unchanging, universal, immaterial Mind. There is only one worldview which accounts for such an entity. This is the biblical worldview. From “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth” (Genesis 1:1), straight through to the “Amen” in Revelation 22:21, the Bible presents the sole worldview which accounts for logic and other abstractions we all take for granted. In short, the God who reveals himself in the Bible is the only entity which even proposes to account for abstract objects. Even other “Abrahamic” theistic religions fall short; atheism doesn’t come close. No one has been able to come up with a suitable substitute. Imagine if you were to try and design a worldview that could account for logic, moral absolutes, math, etc. You would need to come up with a God who was: Unchanging (because logic doesn’t change—and neither do other abstract objects (the name philosophers give to invisible “things” like laws of logic, mathematical principles, absolute moral obligations, etc.). Universal (because these things apply everywhere and at all times) Immaterial (because matter is always changing, so these unchanging abstract objects, if they were grounded in changeable matter and energy, would themselves change) Knowable (because, well, we know them) and self-revelatory. Such a God would need to be relatable and relational in his very being, revealing himself because of who he is and what he is like). By the time you finished your imaginative process, you’d have imagined up a universal, ultimate personality with probably a few differences from the biblical God, such as a lack of triune-ness. But then you’d read the Bible and see the doctrine of the Trinity, along with the other attributes of God (holiness, self-sacrificiality, etc.) revealed therein, which you never could have imagined, and you’d be floored by how obvious and necessary these doctrines all are. Thank God he has revealed himself to us. The more I learn about God, the more I realize how necessary all his attributes are, and how glorious and praiseworthy he is. It’s like, “Oh, yes, of course God must be like that.” But the truth is my feeble mind wouldn’t and couldn’t have invented him. In the person of Jesus Christ, God has revealed himself fully and perfectly. In Jesus we see the attributes of God on display, and as we behold him we not only understand God better, but we actually become more like him. The truth of God is antithetical to the mind bent on seeking its own autonomy (“set on the flesh” as Paul puts it). True knowledge about God (necessary for true knowledge of the world) starts w/ repentance and faith in Jesus. “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge.” This post was adapted from here. For tools to help you define and defend your faith, go to http://thethink.institute
10:56
October 9, 2019
36 - Methods of Evangelism (that actually work) with Tom Schmidt
Receive a brief, weekly email with tools and tips to help you define, share and defend your faith. Sign up to the Think Update! Have you ever sat down next to someone in an airplane and wanted to share your faith with him, but you had no idea where to begin? Or have you ever seen a street preacher shouting about hell and judgment to passers-by and asked yourself, “Is that really what God wants us to do?” Or, have you ever found yourself in a crowd and realized, probably many of these people are currently on their way to Hell, and I have the answer but no idea how to give it to them? These are questions of evangelism, and if you’re like many Christians today, you have, at one point or another, felt like evangelism was a foreign concept--something that others may be gifted in, but sadly is out of your reach. In this episode, we’re going to help you get a grip on just what evangelism looks like in today’s world, why it’s so important, and how you--yes, you--can get started in  pursuing this vital Christian discipline, and even enjoy doing it. My guest is Tom Schmidt, planting pastor of Cross of Christ Fellowship in Naperville, Illinois, as well as a blogger. Tom is a gifted conversationalist who knows how to convey the Good News about Jesus in easily-understandable ways, and to mobilize others to do so as well. In our discussion today, we’re going to look at evangelism from three viewpoints: evangelism in the Bible, types of evangelism today, and what it means to be an evangelist or do personal evangelism. We’ll also look at some problems people have with evangelism and then talk about practical ways you can get started. Get the full show notes at thethink.institute.
54:03
October 8, 2019
35 - How to explain God's wrath in a way that will make sense to your non-Christian friends
When you think of God's wrath, what comes to your mind? Thunderbolts and lightning? Earthquakes and hellfire?  There is an aspect of God's wrath that Christians often get wrong, and this makes it harder to explain the concept to our non-Christian friends. It's a problem we have to rectify, because when we're talking about the Gospel and salvation, God's wrath is what we're being saved from.  In this episode I explain what Paul is talking about in Romans 1:18-24, and how there are two forms of God's wrath. I'll also show you how to deliver this concept in a way that is immediately relevant to non-believers.  Hey, if you like the kind of content we’re creating, you’ll like the Think Update. This is a brief, weekly email delievered straight to your inbox with tools and tips to help you define and defend it.  Subscribe to the Think Update right now at TheThink.Institute/articles/update. If you haven't done so yet, please give us a rating and review on Apple Podcasts. 
51:52
October 7, 2019
34 - Classical Christian Education with Douglas Wilson
When you think of education, what images come to mind? You may think of rows of beige-and-chrome desks, all arranged facing the front of a classroom, the walls of which are decorated with maps, inspirational quotes, and the ABCs. At the front of the classroom stands a teacher (probably a woman, if we’re picturing an elementary classroom), and she is leading her pupils in some lesson. Now, what is she saying to her class? The possible answers to that question will be very different, depending on what kind of school you are imagining. This is because there are vast differences between what sorts of things are taught at public (government-run) schools vs. private schools. And there are even more differences between different kinds of private schools. Is it a Christian or secular school? Is the education being offered modern or classical? Furthermore, the answer will depend on exactly when you’re imagining this scene. What is being taught in public schools today is not necessarily the same as what we were taught in the 80s, 90s, and early 2000s. Certainly much is the same (the ABCs haven’t changed), but differences in the content will reflect the ways our society has changed since we were kids. Does anyone really think that what sixth graders today are being taught about, say, gender, is the same as what their counterparts were being taught in 1996? The question we must face, then, is what kind of changes should we expect schools to make along with society, and which things should remain unchanged? And how do we decide between the two? To answer this question, it can be super helpful to look back into our history and see how schooling was done in the past. What worked, what have we lost since then, and what should we consider bringing back? In this episode, my guest is pastor and author Douglas Wilson. Pastor Wilson is the lead pastor of Christ Church in Moscow Idaho; you may know him as the author of many influential books, or as a podcaster--his podcast, the Plodcast is educational and a lot of fun to listen to; or as the man who, with his wife Nancy, helped to kick start the movement of classical christian education in America in recent decades. I’ve read eight of his books this year and they’ve been incredibly helpful and thought-provoking. Pastor Wilson is going to help us navigate the question of education, how we should think about it as Christians, and why so many today are returning to what is known as Classical Education. For the full show notes including highlights and resources, go to http://thethink.institute.
59:56
October 1, 2019
33 - Christian Universalism, Part 2
Part 2 of Christian Universalism. For the full show notes, go to thethink.institute.
37:06
September 24, 2019
32 - Christian Universalism, Part 1
Have you ever thought about Hell? I remember staying awake in bed when I was seven years old, thinking to myself how awful it was that people were, at that very moment, suffering in Hell, and there would be no escape for them. If you're like me, you have wrestled with the idea of hell and even questioned whether or not its fair for God to send people there.  This is certainly not a new question, and we are most definitely not the first people to wrestle with it. In fact, going back to the early centuries of Christianity, there were those who put forward the idea that Hell was not actually everlasting, and that one day all persons (even evil spirits and Satan himself) would one day be finally reconciled to God.  This school of thought is called Universalism. It received broad acceptance early on, but then was condemned as a heresy (false teaching) after about two hundred years (which, in the span of church history is really a drop in the bucket). So what should Christians today think about Universalism? Is there an acceptable form of Christian Universalism?  In this episode of the Think Podcast, we're going to help equip you to find the answer. Our goal is going to be to compare and contrast Christian Universalism with orthodox Christianity. We'll look at what the Bible teaches about sin, salvation and the afterlife, and then present some of the best arguments in favor of Christian Universalism, to help you answer them.  Get the full show notes at TheThink.Institute.
53:29
September 24, 2019
31 - Are We Living in a Simulation? with the SONS OF THUNDER
Is the Universe a Simulation? Have you ever wondered if the world around you was actually an illusion? It might seem silly to even entertain the idea, but believe it or not this is a very hot topic in some philosophical (and pop-philosophical) circles right now. Everyone from Elon Musk, to Joe Rogan, to Neil deGrasse Tyson have publicly wondered aloud about whether we are living in some kind of computer simulation. It makes for some very interesting podcast listening, but the question, Are we living in a simulation, actually turns out to be harder to answer than it might appear at first. So, are we living in a simulation? PEOPLE, RESOURCES AND ARTICLES MENTIONED IN THIS PODCAST EPISODE Renee Descartes’ “cogito, ergo sum” The Mandela Effect James Anderson’s article, “Are We Living in a Computer Simulation?” Nick Bostrom The Principle of Parsimony (Occam’s Razor) Alvin Plantinga’s Evolutionary Argument Against Naturalism For the complete show notes, go to TheThink.Institute.
56:54
September 19, 2019
30 - Where Does DNA Come From? with Scott Youngren
Have you ever been concerned that science seems to conflict with Christian faith? Science is often talked about as though it is an alternative to religion. That is, a popular conception is that science has replaced Christianity as the best explanation for why the world is the way it is. Is that really true? Whether you're fascinated by science like me (Joel), or not, you probably know that the world of science has yielded some absolutely incredible discoveries over the last century. One of the coolest of those discoveries is the discovery of the double-helix DNA, the building blocks of life. DNA can be difficult to understand and explain but it is essentially the instructions within our cells that tell our cells what to do and determine what kind of organism we will be. All this begs the question: has the new information science has brought forth served to support Christian truth claims, or does it undermine Christianity? Should Christians be concerned that what we believe is unscientific? Our guest today is Scott Youngren, and he is going to help us find the answer. Scott is a pilot by day, apologetics blogger by night. Scott has been writing on apologetics for 10 years, and he brings his experience to bear in answering the question of where DNA comes from. Scott explains why DNA is an actual language, and how language must come from a mind, and why the language of DNA is inexplicable apart from God. Don't miss this exciting, educational and equipping discussion on God and DNA. You can check out the show notes for this episode on thethink.institute/ For more great resources on the Christian perspective, Gospel engagement and the defense of the Christian message, visit http://thethink.institute.
49:52
September 17, 2019
29 - What Should Bible-Believing Christians Think about Jordan Peterson? with the SONS OF THUNDER
Joel and Parker answer the question: how should Christians think about Jordan Peterson?
46:36
September 12, 2019
28 - How to Explain Who God Is (Blogcast)
God is the infinite, personal, Triune Lord, who is higher than everything yet present everywhere, and who has exercises authority and control over all things. There is much we could say about the biblical view of God. However, whatever we say about him, we must do so in a way that both agrees with what the Bible says, and is understandable (which means avoiding unnecessary theological jargon). Knowing God is life’s greatest privilege, and it is our privilege as believers to share that knowledge with others. This episode is an audio recording of the Think Institute article, How to Explain Who God Is. To get the full show notes, go to truthinconversation.com
11:19
September 10, 2019
27 - When Should Christians Get Offended? with the SONS OF THUNDER
When Is It Right to Get Offended? As we strive to be more like Jesus, we find ourselves confronted with the question, when should Christians get offended? We can clearly see in the New Testament that some things did offend Jesus. In fact, some things that got him the most upset seem to be things that would be commonplace to us--nothing worth getting mad about. Other times, we see him resist reacting, or respond calmly (or not at all), over instances that would cause us to fly off the handle. How do we think biblically about our experiences, in order to respond the way Jesus wants us to? Are Trigger Warnings Helpful? In the interest of not offending students, professors started issuing trigger warnings at the beginning of lectures dealing with potentially-sensitive subjects. What began as a potentially-helpful practice has, over the last few years, grown into a cultural meme far beyond the halls of academia. Today, the idea of “triggering” others has become a badge of honor for some who take pride in “melting” (offending, refuting, etc.) “snowflakes” (people who are just as unique and special as they are fragile). I (Joel) have been known to offend atheists, by making arguments like the ones in the episode, “Are You There, God? It’s Me, Science.” The offense was not intentional, but it happened nonetheless. It is ironic that it is self-styled conservatives who take the most pride in triggering self-professed progressives (who are usually more accurately called Leftists), given recent history. Going back about one generation, it was those on the left who were taking pride in offending conservatives and Christians. Their repeated refrain was a call for Christians and conservatives to be more “tolerant.” Today the roles seem to have flipped. What Being Offended Really Means When someone says they feel offended, they are really saying they have been wronged. In theological language, we might say they have been sinned against. They are the victims of an offense. Do We Have the Right Not To Be Offended? As Christians, our interest is not to be in defending our own honor. We are not to be those who seek to avoid becoming triggered at all costs. Like our Lord, we are to exhibit thick skins in the face of personal offense. Jesus, “was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth; like a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and like a sheep that before its shearers is silent, so he opened not his mouth” (Isaiah 53:7). We need to be seeking spiritual conversations (for help with this, see “How to Get Into Spiritual Conversations”). However, when we do this, we will inevitably encounter positions we disagree with. When that happens, we ought to look to the Bible as our guide for how to respond. When we look at Scripture, we see that there are times when it is right to exhibit righteous indignation. Jesus became outraged when Gentiles and children were hindered from drawing near to God. In the latter case, he rebuked his disciples. In the former, he flipped some tables and got out a whip. He warned people sternly not to cause children to sin. He was angered by the Pharisees who closed the door to the Kingdom of God and refused to let anyone else enter. As followers of Jesus, we need not be preoccupied with defending our supposed right to not be offended. However, when barriers are placed between repentant sinners and the love of God, then we are right to not only get offended, but to act accordingly until things are made right. Get complete show notes at truthinconversation.com.
37:19
September 5, 2019
26 - Theology to Restore a Weary Soul with Joe Thorn
Feeling Weary? Have you ever felt weary? So weary that you felt it in your soul? When was that? Maybe it was after busy season at work, or after wrapping up a major ministry project in ministry caring for a loved one. What does God say about being weary? The Bible has a lot to say about the weary soul. Also, I have I have discussed a biblical perspective on weariness in episodes, If God is Good, Why Did He Let This Happen to Me? and Ends, Means & Evangelism (blogcast). Because the Bible has so much to say, it can be easy to pick a verse for a quick “head” fix, like Philippians 4:6, which says “Do not be anxious about anything,” and then grit your teeth and white-knuckle your way through. It can also be tempting to fixate on a verse for a “heart” (emotional) fix--something like Jeremiah 29:11: “‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’” Neither way--seeking only a “head” fix or only a “heart”/emotional fix--is very effective. Yet as Christians, we are supposed to have everything needed for life and godliness--and we’re supposed to be able to take what we know about God and experience rest and restoration for our weary souls. So how exactly does that happen? What does it mean to have a weary soul? And what do we do about it? In this episode we’re going to help you find the answer. My guest is Pastor Joe Thorn. Joe is the Lead Pastor at Redeemer Fellowship in St. Charles, Illinois, and a host of the Doctrine and Devotion podcast, with Jimmy Fowler. He has also written several books about the relationship between theology and the Christian life. Those books include Note to Self (which he talked about with the Biblical Counseling Coalition in 2011), and Experiencing the Trinity, in which he explains how a robust knowledge of God's nature can strengthen one's faith and bring believers back from the brink of falling away and restore them after burnout, exhaustion, and distress. Together we discuss the importance of theology as well as finding theological coaches to help us along our journey.  Get the show notes at https://bit.ly/2jWBB2m
48:57
September 3, 2019
#25 - Amazing Facts About the Bible
In Ecclesiastes 12:12, King Solomon says, "Of making many books there is no end, and much study is a weariness of the flesh." That line was written approximately 3,000 years ago, and if what Solomon said was true then, we can only imagine how much more true it is today, with all the thousands of books written between Solomon and the invention of the printing press--and then innumerable millions of books written since the arrival of Gutenberg's invention. In fact, Google, the online arbiter of all truth (rivaled only for that title by Snopes), estimates that there are nearly 130 million books in the world. For someone like me, who loves reading and has a room in my house filled with books, many of which I will probably never even read, that sounds like a challenge I want to accept, though of course it would be impossible to read all the books in the world. While many are skippable, some of them are worth reading and even life-changing. Historically, Western Civilization (of which I am a part) has recognized a certain canon of books to be considered essential--the so-called Great Books. Other civilizations have their own lists, and of course different worldviews and religions all have their own foundational books--the Vedas, the Qur'an, the Book of Mormon, the Origin of Species, the Communist Manifesto, etc. However, of all the books ever written, there is one that stands above the rest in its internal attributes and external impact on the world. It has shaped civilizations, launched Reformations, ended slavery, sparked revolutions, and transformed the lives of billions of people. In this episode we'll examine its cultural impact, its remarkable composition, its fulfilled prophecies, and its unparalleled central message--the Gospel that has changed me and can change you. I'm speaking, of course, about the Bible. Would you help us get the word out about the Think Institute and Think Podcast? Give us a five-star rating and write us a short review on Apple Podcasts (tiny.cc/thinkpod). Follow along with the Think Institute for more great resources: truthinconversation.com. Twitter: twitter.com/ThinkInst Facebook: fb.me/thethinkinstitute Instagram: www.instagram.com/thethinkinstitute/
48:42
August 29, 2019
#24 - Developing the Masculine Mind with Alex Rodriguez of The Men's Muster
Manliness is an incredibly hot topic right now. There is a whole online ecosystem known as the Manosphere, filled with guys ranging from so-called pickup artists all the way to those who run Christian ministries aimed at helping men pursue biblical manliness (our own friend Jarrett Samuels at the Pursuit of Manliness is doing great work in this are). The Art of Manliness is a massively-impactful website with a podcast near the top of the charts. Jordan Peterson, who encourages men to stand up straight with their shoulders back, has skyrocketed in popularity. Our guest today is Alex Rodriguez. Alex has launched a ministry that is uniquely focused on discipling and deploying men for Christ and his kingdom. We connected with him via social media months ago, and I (Joel) brought my son to one of his four-hour boot camps recently. In this episode, we will talk about the Men's Muster ministry, a man's place in the local church, the family and society, and how to develop the masculine mind. In addition to founding the Men's Muster, our guest earned his M. A. in Biblical and Theological Studies from Knox Theological Seminary. He's the Student Ministries Director at North Suburban Church in Deerfield, Illinois, and he's a husband and a father of four children. We've been looking forward to this conversation for a long time.  To follow the Men's Muster or contact Alex about a biblical boot camp for the men at your church, visit themensmuster.org. Would you help us get the word out about the Think Institute and Think Podcast? Give us a five-star rating and write us a short review on Apple Podcasts (tiny.cc/thinkpod). Follow along with the Think Institute for more great resources: truthinconversation.com. Twitter: https://twitter.com/ThinkInst Facebook: http://fb.me/thethinkinstitute Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thethinkinstitute/
1:07:33
August 27, 2019
#23 - Ends, Means & Evangelism (blogcast)
My son has been in the hospital for over six months now. My wife posts updates on our Facebook page, "Pray for Superhero Lukas,", but I have not written much about him (outside of social media). However, as Lukas has been hospitalized, I have been doing a lot of thinking about God’s sovereignty, and I want to share my thoughts. Specifically, I want to talk about how I think the Lord is using my son’s health crisis to accomplish his mission for our family. So what does God’s sovereignty have to do with Lukas’s stay in the hospital? Aliza and I have been praying for the Lord to bless our ministry. What we most certainly did not expect were the means by which God was going to do this. What do I mean? What I mean is that the Lord is using our time here in the hospital to encourage Christians and to evangelize non-Christians. Aliza and I have had opportunities to share the Gospel with nurses and parents of other patients. Aliza’s blog is getting thousands of views–and she is sharing the Gospel in every post. Literally thousands of people are reading and hearing about Jesus Christ through our family’s pain and suffering. We do not have full insight into God’s plan as to why he has allowed us to enter into this trial. However, we are not afraid. Rather, we are “bold as lions”(Proverbs 28:1) because we know whom we have believed (2 Timothy 1:12). So we pray that God’s word would prove true: that “through many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God” (Acts 14:22), and that by the means our tribulations, our Sovereign God would accomplish his ends of saving many souls. Would you help us get the word out about the Think Institute and Think Podcast? Give us a five-star rating and write us a short review on Apple Podcasts (tiny.cc/thinkpod). Follow the Think Institute for more great resources: truthinconversation.com. Twitter: https://twitter.com/ThinkInst Facebook: http://fb.me/thethinkinstitute Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thethinkinstitute/
15:14
August 22, 2019
#22 - What Is the Gospel?
Over the last decade or so, there's been a resurgence of robust theology in many local churches, and all kinds of exciting, Gospel-centered movements have sprung up.  However, in the last year and a half, there has been a disturbing trend of many of those same churches turning away from making the Gospel their top priority and turning instead toward cultural and social activism. Churches chasing after societal improvement seek to address supposed social and political needs, in order to help people live better lives in the here and now. However, while these desired social outcomes are said to be "Gospel issues," there is a real danger that churches are chasing them at the expense of the Gospel. Certainly, the Gospel has implications for how Christians will function within the broader society, and there is no shortage of social problems to address. Yet our weapon is the word of God--the Bible--and the heart of the Bible is the Gospel.  The Gospel is the cure for sin, and this is what we must bring to the sinful world.  With all the talk about the Gospel, it would help to know what it actually is. So, do you know what the Gospel is? Can you explain it? How well can you articulate it?  First we will talk about the need for Christians to understand the Gospel, followed by what our attitude ought to be toward it, according to Scripture. Then we'll give a very clear and biblical definition of the Gospel and get practical by outlining five ways to communicate it.  We pray this helps you get equipped and encouraged to communicate the best news on earth and the greatest story ever told. Welcome to the Think Podcast. We hope it makes you think. In this episode we mentioned the Changing Face of Evangelism training. If you want to get this training for your church, contact Joel Settecase: https://thethink.institute/contact. Visit churchmovements.com for more information. Follow the Think Institute: Twitter: @thinkinst Facebook: @thethinkinstitute Instagram: @thethinkinstitute Truthinconversation.com The Think Podcast: Tiny.cc/thinkpod Don't forget to leave a five-star review on Apple Podcasts and write us a short review! Thanks for your help and support.
1:04:14
August 20, 2019
#21 - Does the Universe Have a Wonderful Plan for My Life?
Is there an overarching plan for your life, the universe and everything? And if there is, just whose plan is it anyway? It has been popular in recent years to personify "the Universe," as though the matter-and energy, space-time reality we inhabit is somehow personal and even governs our lives in some way. In this episode I discuss that trend and how the personification and even deification of "the Universe" is a cheap substitute for the biblical presentation of God as the sovereign Lord over his creation (including us and the universe too).   During the time that I was a pastor at a local church (actually at a couple of local churches), I used to blog on my personal Wordpress site, Settecase.Wordpress.com. I got a lot of traffic over there, and I still do (at least by my standards), but now I write exclusively on the Think Institute site, Truthinconversation.com, so I’m faced with a dilemma. I want to preserve that blog, but I also want to deliver that content to the folks I'm serving through the Think Institute, yet without simply reposting the article onto the T. I. blog.  How do I introduce the articles, resources and content from my personal blog to the new audience of the Think Institute, and the churches I want to partner with for equipping, engagement and encouragement in Gospel ministry?  The answer is this: I’m taking some of my most popular articles from my personal blog and bringing them over to the Think Institute in audio format--i.e. as podcast episodes. I did that already with "30 Questions for Atheists, Agnostics & Skeptics, which was one of the articles on my personal blog that had gotten the most hits. And now I’m doing it with this article. I hope it's helpful and "I hope it makes you think." Take your study further:  Ravi Zacharias on the four questions of a coherent worldview: https://www.rzim.org/listen/just-a-thought/a-coherent-worldview Cornelius Van Til on God’s Transcendence and Immanence: https://corneliusvantil.wordpress.com/2016/04/27/transcendence-and-immanence/ A helpful diagram of God’s Lordship Attributes (John Frame's concept) by Neil Robbie: https://transforminggrace.wordpress.com/2010/10/19/john-m-frame-on-the-lordship-attributes/ “One or Two?” by Peter Jones: https://www.ligonier.org/learn/articles/one-or-two/ “The Universe Has A Plan, Kids” – a blog post by Virginia Pasley that helped inform this post: https://thoughtcatalog.com/virginia-pasley/2013/11/the-universe-has-a-plan-kids/
19:05
August 13, 2019
#20 - How Should Christians View the Law of Moses? with Dan Osborn
When did Christianity really begin? The church began at Pentecost in or around the year 33 A. D....right? It was then that God sent the Holy Spirit to the disciples of Jesus. Yet the church's roots go back much further; it is also the continuation of the special relationship with God that believers enjoyed for thousands of years before Christ.  Those B. C. believers put their hope in the same Messiah that A. D. believers (i.e. Christians) hope in today. They were looking forward to his first coming, whereas we look back on his first coming and forward to his second coming. There is continuity between the Church of Jesus Christ and the believers who came before (as a particular example, Christians are said to have the same faith as Abraham). Enter the Old Covenant Law (A. K. A. the Law of Moses). The nation of Israel, the covenant people of God in the B. C. era, were given 613 laws and told to obey them in order to maintain the terms of their covenant with God.  As believers today, this side of the events of the life, death, resurrection and reign of the Messiah, how should we view those commands? Should we obey them all? Is that even possible today? Should we keep some but not others? Should we unhitch from them all? And how do we know? In this episode, Dan Osborn and Joel Settecase sit down to address the question of the Law of Moses and Christians today. We hope it makes you think. We need your help to introduce the Think Podcast to more people. Would you help us out? Give us a five-star rating and write us a short review on Apple Podcasts (https://podcasts.apple.com/…/this-is-apologet…/id1462722483…). Follow the Think Institute for more great resources: truthinconversation.com. Twitter: https://twitter.com/ThinkInst Facebook: http://fb.me/thethinkinstitute Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thethinkinstitute/
1:14:44
August 6, 2019
19 - Why Atheism and Evolution Are Actually Enemies (an analysis of CS Lewis and Alvin Plantinga) with the SONS OF THUNDER
The SONS OF THUNDER (Joel and Parker) are back, and there are many things the brothers can't agree on.  For starters, which one of them is the host, and which one is the "co-guest"?  Second, should these Sons of Thunder episodes fall under the auspices of the Think Podcast, or is this its own separate thing?  And the third thing they can't agree on is what should be the catchphrase at the end of each Sons of Thunder episode? (You'll have to listen to the end to see what they came up with--also, in the spirit of the Marvel Cinematic Universe we may have left a few "post credit scenes" for you to enjoy as well).  Alright, so these guys might not see eye-to-eye on everything, but one thing they absolutely, unequivocally *do* agree on is that Christian Theism is correct, rational and satisfying, while atheism (naturalism, materialism, and every form of "physicalism") is, well, not so much any of those things.  There are many excellent arguments Christians may use to support the truth of the Christian message, but in this episode the brothers analyze two similar arguments (so similar that they're sometimes thought to be two versions of the same one), one from philosopher Alvin Plantinga and the other from author C. S. Lewis. Plantinga's "Evolutionary Argument Against Naturalism" and Lewis's "Argument from Reason" both make the case that, if God did not exist, then (for reasons illuminated by the arguments) human beings would have no reason to trust their conclusions (including their conclusion that God does not exist!). It gets technical, but it's a fun and engaging conversation, and (probably) overly-inflammatory as well, which is what you expect from a couple of guys intentionally calling themselves the Sons of Thunder.  Parker does a lot of the heavy philosophical lifting on this episode, bringing to bear his study of the two arguments and two men making the arguments.  He also makes a shameless plug for his pretentious, pretentious blog (his words), which you can locate, read, educate yourself with at http://www.trendsettercase.wordpress.com. Seriously, his blog is incredible, and you'll want to check it out.  Follow along with the Think Institute on Twitter (@ThinkInst), Facebook and Instagram (both are @TheThinkInstitute), or get more articles and resources to help you get equipped with knowledge, encouraged to share and defend the Christian message, and engaged in conversation with unbelievers as you seek "Truth In Conversation" at http://www.truthinconversation.com.
1:25:19
August 1, 2019
#18 - The Story of the Cosmos with Daniel Ray
Psalm 19:1 says, "The heavens declare the glory of God, and the expanse proclaims the work of his hands. Day after day they pour out speech; night after night they communicate knowledge. So it sounds like the more we study the heavens, or outer space, the more we ought to come to glorify God. We might expect modern scientists to be the most devout Christians, and yet many of the scientific fields are dominated today by atheists and unbelievers. My guest today wants to change that situation and show everyone how astronomy and astrophysics, which unravel the mysteries of the universe, bring glory to God. On this episode of the Think Podcast I speak with Dan Ray. Dan is a former schoolteacher and lay astronomer. He earned his Master’s in Christian apologetics from Houston Baptist University and his thesis explored the contemporary relevance of C. S. Lewis’s cosmological imagination in the Chronicles of Narnia. He also hosts an excellent podcast called “Good Heavens.” This was an important discussion because of the nature of Dan’s book, the Story of the Cosmos, which recently debuted on Amazon and made a big splash. It’s a new book that brings over a dozen different scientists, apologists and thinkers together to answer the question, what do the heavens teach us about the glory of God? Over the next hour you’ll hear us discuss: how the book came together, the Hubble Deep field photographs, which amazed me as a kid, the awe and wonder of looking up at the night sky filled with stars and realizing how truly tiny we are, human significance… or is it insignificance? (we get into that), the meaning and purpose of stars from a biblical perspective, the importance of connecting various fields of study and “taking every thought captive” and the unity of the church as we examine the glory of the heavens and unite around the truth, and we even delve into spiritual warfare and how cosmological studies play a role in that. We also bring up the founders of modern science, men like Kepler, Brahe, Galileo--and how their faith contributed to their pioneering scientific efforts. Before our dialogue ended we did get into some apologetical argumentation, using the Cosmos as our jump-off point, talking about how modern science, at least when done naturalistically, assumes the intelligibility of the universe w/o a reason. And we talked about how this led to a dilemma for Albert Einstein. Dan ended with recommending to our listeners the value of having a personal encounter with nature, of just Looking up at the night sky in a dark sky park, and he might even motivate our listeners to invest in a telescope. I know I’d be considering it if I didn’t live in the light-polluted metropolis of Chicago. He makes some really valuable recommendations for those who want to take their study of the night sky further, so make sure you listen all the way through. Follow Dan Ray: https://thestoryofthecosmos.com/ Podcast: “Good Heavens! A podcast about the universe with Wayne and Dan.” https://www.patreon.com/GoodHeavens  Follow the Think Institute: Twitter: @thinkinst Facebook & Instagram: thethinkinstitute Listen to the Think Podcast every week on your favorite podcast app.
1:11:45
July 30, 2019
#17 - 30 Questions for Atheists, Agnostics & Skeptics
*****Enjoy this BONUS EPISODE***** We are changing up the regular routine of weekly podcasts in order to post this bonus episode offering (what we hope will be) a really useful resource. ***** The other day I received a comment on one of my posts from a friend of mine who identifies as an atheist. He was offended by my post (it was about how science is not accounted for by atheism), and his comment really made me think. My goal isn't to offend anyone, but in the course of putting so much content out on apologetics, it's bound to happen.  I want to equip believers to be ready for any questions that they encounter about their faith. I talk about how to answer questions a lot, but in this episode I want to change things up a little bit, and talk about how to go on the "offensive" without being unnecessarily "offensive," and ask a few questions of our own. Of course, it’s common for Christians to be confronted with questions and objections from non-Christians about the Christian message. We need to be ready for such questions (1 Peter 3:15). But we also need to be equipped with questions of our own. After all, we aren’t the only ones presenting a worldview. The atheist, agnostic or skeptic also has a worldview. And like most everyone, there are likely to be aspects of that worldview he or she hasn’t fully thought through. Encouraging an unbeliever to really examine their own worldview can be a powerful apologetic tool. The goal is not to win the argument but to engage in meaningful dialogue, to seek "truth in conversation" (the Think Institute motto) and, if the Lord gives the opportunity, to point the person to the Good News about Jesus that alone can give them forgiveness and eternal life. I hope you enjoy this and, of course, "I hope it makes you think."  ***** Help us spread the word about the podcast and get more listeners, so we can equip, encourage and engage more Christians to know, share and defend their Christian faith. If you like the Think Podcast, give us a 5-star rating and write a review on Apple Podcasts. It takes one minute and really has a big effect on our visibility. We may never reach the popularity level of Joe Rogan or Serial, but we can't help but think that the more believers we can get our content in front of, the greater impact we can have for Christ's kingdom. ***** truthinconversation.com  Facebook: http://fb.me/thethinkinstitute Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thethinkinstitute/ Twitter: https://twitter.com/ThinkInst
34:44
July 25, 2019
#16 - Apologetics and the Local Church with Chaseton Hahn
Welcome to the Think Podcast, freshly renamed from This Is Apologetics. We are branching out now beyond apologetics into the areas of worldview, theology and evangelism. We're seeking truth in conversation with pastors, missionaries, thinkers, and others every week. Tonight, however we are continuing with the common theme of apologetics. Joel Settecase & Think Institute contributor Chaseton Hahn discuss the benefits of a local church having an apologetics ministry. It's about more than just outreach.  The ever-increasing secularization of Western culture has been accompanied by a rapid decline of esteem for Christian morality and ethics. Followers of Jesus in the United States must come to grips with a rather unfortunate reality: we are living in a post-Christian nation.  Our culture and its guiding ideas are constantly changing. Because of this, the need for the prophetic voice of the Church in the world has never been needed with greater urgency. Apologetics helps the church build discernment—an essential skill that must be cultivated in order for Christians to be fully prepared to give account of their hope in Christ when the culture comes demanding an answer. The definitive purpose for including apologetics in your church is that it points to and glorifies the Lord Jesus Christ.  You can read the full article by Chaseton Hahn and Joel Settecase at /https://thethink.institute/articles/top-10-benefits-of-bringing-apologetics-into-the-life-of-your-church.  Follow along on Twitter (@thinkinst), Instagram (@thethinkinstitute), Facebook (@thethinkinstitute), and online (http://www.truthinconversation.com).  Connect with Chaseton on Facebook or on Twitter: @Chaseton_Hahn. Hey! Want to help the Think Institute grow the Think Podcast and equip more believers to know what we believe, share the Gospel, and engage in meaningful conversation with non-believers? There is a really important way that you can help.  Help us get the word out about this ministry and podcast by writing us a review and giving us an honest, 5-star review on Apple Podcasts. It takes two minutes tops and really helps us grow our audience, so we can equip, engage and encourage more believers. This also helps us connect with more pastors and local churches, so we can partner for worldview, evangelism and apologetics trainings.
29:56
July 23, 2019
#15 - Are You There, God? It's Me, Science.
Science & Religion: BFFs or best frenemies? This is a topic that I've been getting very much into lately, and that is the intersection of science and biblical faith. We talked about how the biblical worldview provides the foundation for scientific inquiry by way of a three-fold basis: the cosmos which was given in order to be studied, the human mind which was given in order to study it, and God's revelation which was given in order to make sense of them both. In true Presuppositional fashion, we examined the biblical data first, then we stepped into the unbelieving worldview for the sake of argument, demonstrating that it does not provide the basis for its own conclusions (namely that it is possible to do science and to know that God does not exist). We also saw how the same Bible that reveals the basis for science also reveals our sin and our need for the Savior, so we got into the Gospel a little as well. For further reading: The Story of the Cosmos: How the Heavens Declare the Glory of God (Paul M. Gould and Daniel Ray, general editors): www.amazon.com/…/ref=sr_1_1_ssp… The Physics of Einstein: Black Holes, time travel, distant starlight, E=mc^2 (Jason Lisle): www.amazon.com/…/B0…/ref=sr_1_1… "An Argument From Science" (Joel Settecase): settecase.wordpress.com/…/this…/ If you enjoyed this episode, please help us get the word out about the content we're creating each week. "Like" the Think Institute page and share it with your friends.
58:38
July 16, 2019
#14 - Do Christians "Need to Calm Down?"
Taylor Swift's new single, "You Need to Calm Down," calls out social conservatives and (especially in the video) Christians for opposing the freedom and dignity of her friends.  We look for the presuppositions being brought to the table and what kind of worldview best supports the values she promotes in her song, then we commend the biblical worldview and the Gospel.  The hope with this episode is that believers will be encouraged to talk about these issues with their non-Christian friends, and that nonbelievers who listen would hear the truth, that sin is a serious matter, but there is true freedom and abundant life with God, through Jesus.
50:48
July 9, 2019
#13 - How Do Christians View the World?
We're back after a week off. In order to defend the Christian message, you have to know what that message is. In tonight's episode Joel gives an introduction to the biblical worldview. It's part one in an extended series on what Christians believe. We hope it makes you think. For the Think Institute's worldview and apologetics training resources, go to https://thethink.institute/print-resources. Theme song: Whiskey on the Mississippi. Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com). Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/
50:18
July 2, 2019
12 - How to Destroy Every Argument Against God with the SONS OF THUNDER
It's the premier of the SONS OF THUNDER, a podcast-within-a-podcast that has been years in the making. In this "unnecessarily inflammatory" (and much longer than usual) episode, Joel and Parker Settecase lay down the groundwork for talking about apologetics--the defense of the truth of the Christian faith. They get into how to get apologetics wrong and how to do it right--in a way that stays true to Scripture and honors Christ. This episode delivers way more content than "This Is Apologetics" typically goes, but sometimes it's fun to drink out of a firehose (or so they tell me). Music from filmmusic.io: "Killers" by Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com) Licence: CC BY (creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)
1:40:00
June 18, 2019
#11 - How to Raise Kids Who Can Defend Their Faith
How can you prepare your children to have the kind of faith today that will answer tomorrow's challenges? We look at three keys: Principles, Practice and Prayer.  A shorter episode tonight, but packed with a lot of really practical recommendations. A sampling of them: Catakids (Kindle): https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07SW1SQ9F  The Rizers (YouTube): https://www.youtube.com/user/therizers Dana Dirksen (Amazon Music): https://music.amazon.com/artists/B0014B3006?ref=dm_sh_0f6d-b88e-dmcp-f935-291bd&musicTerritory=US&marketplaceId=ATVPDKIKX0DER
48:55
June 11, 2019
#10 - Evangelism and Apologetics to Muslims, with N. G.
Did you know nearly one out of every 3.5 people on earth is a Muslim? Christians have been commissioned to disciple the nations, yet historically we have sent precious few resources to bring the Gospel to this incredibly massive portion of the human population.  In episode 10, Joel Settecase and N. G. (name withheld to avoid it coming up in search results) pull up a couple of chairs to discuss the goal, motivation and method of sharing the Gospel and defending the Christian message to Muslims. They get deep and wide in this conversation, which ranges from the theological to the practical. We hope it makes you think.
1:06:42
June 4, 2019
#9 - Does Christian Hypocrisy Disprove the Christian Message?
Does Christian hypocrisy mean that Christianity is false? Some initial comments related to recent pro-life legislation and a now infamous tweet about Christian hypocrisy that unleashed a massive conversation last week. Then I do an internal critique from the biblical perspective of the idea that hypocrisy discredits the messenger or voids the message, and then analyze whether the unbelieving worldview can account for the kind of moral standard needed in order to condemn hypocrisy as immoral. Theme song: Whiskey on the Mississippi Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com) Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/
1:04:00
May 28, 2019
#8 - The Uniqueness of Christianity with Brandon Cooper
My old friend, Pastor Brandon Cooper (Cityview Community Church) joins me to discuss what makes the Christian worldview stand out from all the rest. We get into metaphysics, the exclusive claims of Christianity and Pluralism, Hinduism, eschatology, and why the biblical Gospel is truly unique. If you're a Christian, this will help you articulate and defend what you believe. If you're not, it will challenge your assumptions and encourage you to entertain new ideas you perhaps hadn't considered. Either way, I hope it makes you think.
1:07:49
May 21, 2019
#7 - What Is Truth? with Alan Kern
In this epic episode, Joel Settecase and Alan Kern discuss the nature of truth and whether the concept of truth makes any sense without God. This was a very interactive video, both between the two of them and with the viewers. The guys directly addressed questions from the viewers, including one who asked how he can know which God is the true one. Theme song: Whiskey on the Mississippi Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com) Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/
1:35:49
May 14, 2019
#6 - How to Get Into Spiritual Conversations
Talking to strangers can be a scary thing. But for Christians, it can be a very rewarding endeavor. We introduced what spiritual conversations are and why we ought to seek them out. Then we looked at some biblical examples and two or three examples from my own life. Finally, I shared two stories of spiritual conversations I had recently, both on airplanes and discussed the benefit of having a "captive audience."
1:10:22
May 7, 2019
#5 - Why Do You Believe the Bible's Crazy Stories?
Tonight Joel Settecase addressed the Dreaded Question: "Do you *really* believe all those crazy stories in the Bible?" The Bible says that a donkey talked, a man got swallowed by a fish and lived to tell about it, and that Jesus Christ rose from the dead. How crazy are these stories really? Does the Bible provide any good reasons for believing them? Are there good reasons to doubt them? We hope tonight's episode fortifies your faith and challenges your doubts; in short we hope it makes you think.
1:03:07
April 30, 2019
#4 - Who Is Jesus? with Dan Osborn
Pastor Dan Osborn has been teaching through the "I Am" statements of Jesus in the John's Gospel, and he joins Joel Settecase for tonight's conversation. The two discussed the biblical identity of Jesus and challenges to that identity. Could Jesus have been a mere prophet? Was he a great moral teacher but nothing more? Was he in fact a liar or perhaps delusional? And what do we do with all those fantastic claims he made about himself?
1:10:02
April 23, 2019
#3 - If God Is Good, Why Did He Let This Happen to Me?
Joel Settecase gets personal in this one, talking about his son Lukas and the very real objection that many people have to Christian faith, known as the Existential Problem of Evil. So why does the good God allow suffering? Here's one man's take on it.
1:08:47
April 16, 2019
#2 - How the Bible's Foreshadowing Proves It Was Written By God
In a unique argument for God's existence, Joel Settecase talks about the literary technique of foreshadowing that shows up in the Bible, and what that entails about the Bible's authorship..
1:03:40
April 9, 2019
#1 - Is Christianity Illogical?
Tonight Joel Settecase addressed a common objection to the Christian faith: that it is illogical. He looked at the laws of logic, what they are, what they are like, and whether an atheistic or biblical worldview allows us to believe in them and use them.
33:48
April 2, 2019
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